November 30th, 2003



Did a lot of work on home lighting this weekend:

-- replaced 5 dead light bulbs, including one which was on a mystery switch which is no longer mysterious.
-- two new awesome matching nightstand lamps
-- new tall, wrought iron light-at-top-of-pole lamp which matches other furniture in living room
-- moved old bedroom nightstamp reading light to computer room

House is so bright and happy now.


How can Rhythmbox (0.6.0) be so almost cool yet suck so much at the same time?

I tried it a couple versions ago and it sucked even more, so I guess they're making progress, but man... not too quickly.

And there's nothing fancy going on either... they're just trying to clone iTunes. And it's all a front-end to gstreamer. Why'd they write this in C? It feels like using the Perl GTK2 bindings somebody could whip out a better version in a couple days or something. And incorporate more features, too, like burning a CD from a playlist. And being faster, by using more intelligent/lazy data structures.

Another feature I want is it to be able to do another action on "play" than invoke gstreamer, like invoke a remote play command using some of the MP3::Daemon stuff. Hell, just arbitrary music playing backends, please.

And ID3 tag editing.

Is there any good music player for Linux? xmms is the de-facto crap solution.


But to be fair, Rhythmbox isn't too bad.... it just has a lot of rough edges and shortcomings.

Vacation in review

I took most Wednesday off work because I was obsessed with my xmas light idea, so I just essentially took a 5 day weekend/holiday... without working. I normally work on the weekends, so even one day off feels weird, but 5 days was definitely weird.

Things accomplished:

-- five social events: 3 thanksgiving, 1 party, 1 bar. (all too much too fast at the time, but fun in retrospect)

-- learned a lot about electronics, glue logic families, and the parallel port. controlled xmas lights with computer. ordered a bunch of parts of Jameco to be delivered tomorrow, I think.

-- more lights throughout house, fixing dead bulbs (mostly Dina)

-- rented and watched "The Italian Job", making me appreciate that I have a big-ass TV and big-ass TVs are better at showing widescreen DVDs than standard cable going through TiVO MPEG encoding. (xmas list idea: satellite and HD Tivo! :P) heh... Series2 Tivos are half of what I paid at the time. damn technology.

-- rearranged office. cleaned house.

-- got User Mode Linux (UML) running, in a variety of ways: via Debian's rootstrap, and then later by hand. So fucking cool. I look forward to playing with it more soon.

-- installed rope lighting around hot tub gazebo

-- cleaned up MP3 collection by hand and with some scripts; evaluated state of rhythmbox; learned more about ID3 tag hell

-- bought a Slimp3 Squeezebox to move between my bedroom and gazebo, after pricing a home-made solution would be bulkier and more expensive. plus, Slimp3 people are all open source and perl geeks.

Um, other stuff I forgot.

Now I sleep... back to work tomorrow.